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Study Design

Research is a careful investigation or inquiry specifically through search for new facts in any branch of knowledge. It is an original contribution to the existing stock of knowledge making for its advancement.

The research design refers to the overall strategy that you choose to integrate the different components of the study in a coherent and logical way, thereby, ensuring you will effectively address the research problem; it constitutes the blueprint for the collection, measurement, and analysis of data.

Choosing a study design

  1. Case report
  2. Case series
  3. Case controlled study
  4. Cross sectional
  5. Cohort
  6. Retrospective comparison
  7. Prospective Comparison

A Case report

  • Description of one interesting and unusual case
  • This is anecdotal and may form the basis for further study
  • This may be the only way to report on something very rare

Case series

  • Description of several cases in which no attempt is made to answer specific hypotheses or compare results with another group of cases.

Cross sectional study

  • A survey of the frequency of disease, risk factors or other characteristics in a defined population at one particular point in time.

Cohort study

  • An observational study of a group of people with a specific characteristic or disease who are followed over a period of time to detect change
  • Comparison with control group is allowed

Case control study

  • An observational study where characteristics of people with a disease (cases) are compared with selected people without the disease (controls)

Controlled Trials

  • An experimental study in which an intervention is applied to one group and the outcome compared with that in a similar group (controls) not receiving the intervention
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